“My book, The Science God, is focused on an esoteric area of moral philosophy that would ordinarily be of interest to only a small percentage of readers. I needed help with making the material as accessible as possible, and I valued Arlene’s work on matters of style and vocabulary a great deal. Her editing knowledge is deep and thorough, and she is very personable as well. But I was most impressed by her willingness to research fine points of historical and philosophical detail and then give me useful suggestions, both for my presentation of those details and for the integration of them into my larger argument. This took more than a solid knowledge of current English usage and style; it took a level of diligence—a work ethic—that one encounters only a few times in a career. She made so many suggestions that helped me to make my book clearer and more interesting for ordinary readers. I am still, months later, deeply grateful. Thank you, Arlene.”

— Dwight Wendell

The Science God

Kelowna, BC

October 2016


1-The Idealist

“Arlene Prunkl made an invaluable editorial contribution to the final draft of The Idealist. Thanks to her expertise and guidance, I was able to correct several point of view issues, create more effective foreshadowing for several major plot revelations, tighten the prose overall (even though I ended up with 565 pages of historical fiction), and, Dieu merci, smooth out my rough French inserts. She is a gifted and inspiring editor, very patient and always, always willing to talk through issues, major and minor. She’s also got a tireless work ethic that ensures you hit your deadlines. I came across Arlene reading through a bunch of editorial blogs and found her writing refreshingly conversational—and I sent her a note that led to a very positive working relationship. Turned out to be one of the best emails I ever sent.”

— George Hirthler

The Idealist: The Story of Baron Pierre de Coubertin

Atlanta, Georgia

June 2016



1-Brain Evangelists cover

“Arlene, I’ve published four books and have had lots of editors, but none have been half as thorough as you. I’m gob-smacked, to tell you the truth. My patients read my books, of course, and a few have pointed out editing failures. Good luck to them this time around. I’m a fussy author, but there’s little to fuss about with your editing.”

— Gordon Warme

Brain Evangelists: How Psychiatry Has Convinced Us to Believe in Its Far-fetched Science and Dubious Treatments

Toronto, Ontario

March 2016


stalking salmon

“Harbour Publishing showed good judgement when they assigned Arlene Prunkl as the editor for my recent book: Stalking Salmon & Wrestling Drunks. She is clever, balanced, and shows insight into the author’s intent. She has the perfect editorial skills to assist an author in the final stage of completing his work. Slainte!”

— Peter L. Gordon

Stalking Salmon & Wrestling Drunks

Victoria, BC

March, 2016



“I knew Arlene would do a good job, but I was blown away by just how good she was. An agent had identified some specific areas that could be cut from the first quarter of my novel and repurposed elsewhere, but I needed help with the ‘how.’ Concerned that cuts would shorten my already short book, I was also keen to know whether there were any areas that could benefit from new scenes. I thought I might be pushing the scope of her job description a bit—but no, Arlene was full of great ideas. She never pointed out a problem or lapse in logic without suggesting a solution. This edit was a collaborative experience that I walked away from energized, well equipped with a detailed substantive and copy edit, and ready to nail my rewrite. Don’t hesitate to hire Arlene; she’ll far surpass your expectations.”

— Maggie Findlay

Sticks and Bones: A Lucky Blackstock Mystery

Guelph, Ontario

Novel forthcoming in 2017



1-Fighting Back Cover 51 (3)

“I searched the websites of many editors before deciding to approach Arlene Prunkl of Penultimate Editorial Services. I was impressed with her experience as outlined in her bio. I took note of the uncommonly substantive content of her blog. But I chose based primarily on my perception that she was not one of those editors who prided herself on the severity or harshness of her criticisms. As a first-time fiction writer, I didn’t want to pay someone to gleefully savage my work.

“I made a good choice. I’m surprised at how much fun this was. Arlene’s work was painstakingly thorough as she went through every word of my nearly 95,000-word manuscript. She caught mistakes in punctuation, formatting, and English construction. She found clichés I didn’t know were there. She found inconsistencies and plot holes others hadn’t noticed. She made comments that forced me to think through my assumptions about what my readers would know and believe. She made even her harshest criticisms nicely, and was careful to tell me what was good along with what was not.

“Arlene is pleasant to talk to, responds quickly to e-mail, and does great work. What else can you ask for in an editor? Based on this first experience, I’m planning to hire her for future projects as well.”

— John F. Harrison

Fighting Back

Concord, Massachusetts

Forthcoming Dec. 2016


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